Saturday, September 1, 2018

One Bright Note for Importers if UK Gets a No Deal Scenario on Brexit from the EU

Warehousing Boss Points Out Hidden Bonus
Shipping News Feature
UK – Whilst the bulk of the British transport lobby, from freight forwarders to road haulage outfits, have been critical of the government over its tardiness and lack of clarity on Brexit, the United Kingdom Warehousing Association (UKWA) has accepted the now very real possibility that the deadline will arrive without a formal deal being struck and found at least one possible positive point for importers.

To ensure its members are prepared for the dreaded ‘no deal’ scenario the UKWA has issued guidelines to its members after welcoming the recently published government guidelines on trading with the EU in the event that a Brexit deal cannot be reached. The three HMRC notices, covering Customs & Excise, VAT for Business and UK Trade Tariffs, were published on 23rd August following extensive and on-going consultation by the Government with UKWA, together with other trade associations and industry bodies.

The UKWA says the guidelines echo its own long-standing message to its members that it is essential to prepare for a ‘no deal’ scenario and particularly so for those businesses that have only ever traded with EU and are not familiar with Rest of World (ROW) customs processes. Specifically, UKWA’s advice to its members includes:

  • Get goods classified and start showing the tariff number on commercial invoices
  • Make sure you are VAT registered
  • Explore AEO
  • Talk to your bank about a deferment account
In talking about his organisation’s approach to Brexit Peter Ward, UKWA CEO had one bright note for importers when he said:

“Our specialist advisor on Customs, Barbara Scott, has highlighted one benefit to come out of a no deal scenario, namely, that we would have postponed accounting for VAT for EU and non-EU trade, i.e. VAT accounted for but not actually paid.

”This is positive news for UK importers and will provide a nice one-off cash flow injection into businesses, UKWA will continue to lobby that this should be applied even if a deal is reached on Brexit, as this has been a longstanding discussion since it was originally removed some years ago.”

UKWA members are urged to contact the Association for further information and support in preparing for Brexit while non-members are invited to join UKWA to access the specialist advice and practical guidance they require as Brexit approaches.

Photo: For UKWA members such as retail giant John Lewis, with vast warehouses such as the Magna Park facilities shown here, the final Brexit deal carries huge importance.